10th February 20
Dear Parents and Guardians,
I am very grateful to all the parents who completed the ISI Parent Survey last week. The feedback has been extremely helpful, and although we did not receive the comments, we have been given the data, which I will share with everyone in due course after the management team have drilled down on the figures. I was delighted that it was predominantly positive, although there were some trends, which empowers the management team and the staff in general to improve our provision.
The feedback from the inspectors was shared with the Governors and the SMT last Thursday. Until the final report is published by the ISI, the detail is embargoed.
However, all I can say is that everyone left the meeting with the inspectors with beaming smiles!
I will not reflect further, as I want parents to read Mr Cox’s chapel service below.
Week 3’s highlight was the Swimming Gala on Tuesday 21st January, which saw some superb individual swims, great house spirit and a very close result. Duckworth and School House shared the spoils with 91 points each, and St Martin’s and Leamington both scored 83 points. Adam Frost (School, Fifth) broke two school records, and Nathaniel Turner (School, 3rd) one, as our club swimmers had the opportunity to show their quality in the pool.
The Priory girls played very well in a 16-10 netball loss to Wellesley House on Wednesday 22nd. Isla Taylor (Re) was Player of the Match and was ably supported by a great performance from Lola Lanham (Sh).
The Priory boys had two tough encounters on the Rugby pitch, at Gad’s Hill on Monday 20th and again away at Norton Knatchbull on Wednesday 22nd. The match at Gad’s Hill were both won convincingly with every Priory boy having the opportunity to represent the College, and this participation was reflected on Wednesday, though with the results reversed against Norton Knatchbull. Many boys stood out, not least Luke Reeve and Barnaby Agar in the B team and Ronnie Meadows (Sh) and Harry Dyson (Sh) for the A Team, with Seb King (Re) finishing a great team try.
Libby Turbutt (St Martin’s, 4th) has had another good weekend, this time at the London Indoor Games, finishing in 4th place in the Long Jump and 3rd place in her first Triple Jump competition of the season.
The Priory Netball girls had a superb win on Wednesday 29th January at home to Duke of York’s, Lola Lanham was Player of the Match in another excellent performance.
The Priory boys found it much harder going at the Foster Cup 7s at Junior King’s on the same day, coming up against some strong opposition on our side of the draw. They look forward to getting back to winning ways this week at home against Wellesley.
On Tuesday 28th January, the U16 Netball girls again showed their quality beating St Edmund’s at home. Great shooting from Lottie Hide (4th, St Martin’s) and Maisie Wells (4th, St Martin’s) complemented Player of the Match Red Osman-Titcombe (5th, St Martin’s), who was characteristically tenacious throughout.
Thursday 30th January saw the involvement of some senior girls in the Netball team as they battled well and enjoyed representing the College before the interchange of the U16 team saw the pace change, and the second half was won against the visiting Claremont Seniors. Libby Turbutt (4th, St Martin’s) was Player of the Match.
The weekend saw the away leg of our annual Priory sports exchange with Battle Abbey. 18 Remove pupils travelled down to Sussex for an overnight stay with Netball and Football fixtures on the Saturday morning. Well done to all who took part and my thanks go to Miss Hutson, Mr Rich and Mr Payne for helping staff the trip so efficiently.
We are delighted to report that the judges have finished their assessment of the Rotary Young Writer competition and the following from Dover College were selected as winners:
The first place went to Gabriella Hood (4th, Duckworth) for “The Boy He Bullied”.
Second place went to Imogen Langley (5th, St Martin’s) for “Paradox”.
The next stage is for Gabriella’s poem to be submitted to the Rotary District organiser where it will be judged against work submitted via other Clubs in our District. We may therefore hear further news from the District organiser.
For Gabriella and Imogen there are prizes worth £100 and £50 respectively. Prize Giving presentations will take place at The Leaf Hotel in Whitfield. We are very proud of both of them.
The cast are working extremely hard in rehearsals and Mrs Myers is very proud of their professionalism and talent! Tickets are now available to purchase from the Bursary. Pupils go free and all other tickets are £5.00 per head. Please ensure when you book that you mention pupil tickets too so that we have correct numbers. Seating is limited so I advise booking ASAP!
Thursday 5th March, 19:00
Friday 6th March, 19:00
Prepare to be Razzle Dazzled!
Monday 27th January was Holocaust Memorial Day and I want to talk to you today about why remembering this day is so important.
A note of explanation: The word “Holocaust” means “Great Destruction – as if by fire”. The nature of fire means that everything it touches is consumed and no trace is left. If you know anything at all about the Holocaust, you will know why this word has been chosen.
Now a short History lesson:
In the 1930s, Hitler and the Nazis regarded all Jews as enemies and set out to exterminate them. They targeted others, too, including people with mental and physical disabilities and gay men. They set up large concentration camps and death camps.
During the Second World War, the Nazis murdered approximately six million Jewish people and at least five million more people who were non-Jews.
In total, at least 11 million people died in Nazi concentration camps and death camps. Of these, one million were children – just like you. More than 1 million people died at one concentration camp in Poland called Auschwitz. The Memorial Day itself is especially chosen, as it was yesterday – 75 years ago – that Auschwitz was liberated from the Nazis.
11 million people is such a huge number that it is difficult to understand. What would 11 million people look like if they were all standing in one place…?
This figure is so huge that, sometimes, following individual stories help us understand the evil of the Holocaust:
Before the war, my own Grandfather, Pastor Frederick Muller, was a Methodist minister in Kiel, Germany. On “Kristallnacht”, mobs of Nazis – all over Germany – firebombed and burnt Jewish homes, businesses and synagogues. The synagogue across the road from my grandparents’ own church was burnt to the ground. My Opa and Oma took in the rabbi and their family with the cries of the mob ringing in their ears: “You’re next, Pastor Muller!” Over the next few days, the rabbi and his family disappeared. Oma and Opa were forever anguished and our family never ever learnt what had happened to the rabbi and his family. I think we can guess.
Julius Hirsch was a German Jew and a hero of the First World War – even being awarded the Iron Cross for extreme bravery on the battlefield. After the first war, he played football for Germany. He was so good that he even scored four goals in one match against Holland! He was murdered at Auschwitz just for being a Jew. I cannot help but think that there must have been people who celebrated his footballing skills via newsreels and newspaper reports and then were connected with his murder!
Edith Grosman was in the first all-girl transport to Auschwitz. Of 999 girls, nearly all died in the camp, only 5 survived. Edith lost all her family and friends, including her sister. After the war, she even felt guilty about surviving – “Survivors guilt”. This feeling was so powerful that some people could not live with the pain of knowing that they had survived when everyone they care for had not.
Primo Levi, an Italian Jew who became a great writer after the war, survived the camps by being a talented Chemist. The Nazis did not kill him because he was too valuable. Years after the war he died from a staircase fall. Some of his friends think he just tripped. Some of his friends think he threw himself down the staircase because the survivor guilt became too much to bear.
You might think that the events of the Holocaust are History now and that – surely – it could never happen again. However, a famous poem, written after the war by an anti-Nazi Christian, who spent 7 years himself in a concentration camp, Pastor Martin Niemöller, explains how such a horror could happen again:
First, they came for the Communists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Communist
Then they came for the Socialists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Socialist
Then they came for the trade unionists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a trade unionist
Then they came for the Jews
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Jew
Then they came for me
And there was no one left
To speak out for me
It is a poem asking us to be brave. Asking us to stand up to evil and those who would do harm to others. Could you be brave enough to stand up to wrong doers? Could you be more than a bystander?
Susan Pollack was a Hungarian Jew who survived the camps and came to Britain after the war. She was awarded an MBE – a medal: “Member of the British Empire” for her ongoing work with remembering the Holocaust. Why does she still speak about the Holocaust…?
She says: “Jews have been persecuted for so long, it somehow seems to be embedded. It’s one of the reasons I continue talking about the Holocaust. I try to instil in my listeners that we’re all together, and we have to protect one another. What took place – only yesterday in my mind – will never, ever happen again. Living in Britain, for me, is a great privilege and I’ve made important contributions to the country. At my age, I realise that life is short. We’ve got to be accountable for what we do and help one another.”
Let us pray:
We remember all those who bear the inner or outer scars of the Holocaust and other acts of genocide.
Be close to them.
Restrain all those who are filled with hatred and who use violence.
Change their hearts.
As we remember, bring home to us the reality of evil.
Help us to stand up against wrong, even if we suffer by doing so.
Help us to defend all of those who are not strong enough to defend themselves.
Upper and Lower Sixth pupils Ben Preusser (School, U6), Bekas Yusuf (Leamington, U6) and George Ting (School, L6) got away to the countryside again this week on another Geography Fieldtrip. This time Mr Payne joined in the fun, and thanks to his preparedness, was even willing to stand in a river for the sake of Geography!
This week’s trip was based in Swanage. We went from here to the sand dunes at Studland Nature Reserve where the boys measured the acid ity of the soils in different locations from the yellow dunes to the grey dunes, among other things. There was again, as in other A-level field trips, work to be done on statistical analysis later into the evening when we got back to the centre.
On the second day, we looked particularly at infiltration rates at different locations in the local river catchment. This took us to some rather interestingly muddy tracks. The highlight that morning was watching Bekas run at high speed to catch the containers that the wind whipped out of his hand on the hilltop. Being a striker on the football pitch Bekas scored of course and managed to stay safe en-route. The efforts to clean white shoes after the morning’s mud were quite determined too. Perhaps if the same determination was applied to getting the correct items on the fieldtrip list, we could have experienced more mud with less aftercare needed.
On the journey home, we stopped at the beautiful and geographically fascinating Lulworth Cove. This was a brief stop but gave real examples of what we have already studied in Coastal Processes.
All in all a brief but worthwhile trip. Thanks again to Mr Payne and Mr Hill who have assisted on the recent geography fieldtrips.
Anna Grant (4th, St Martin’s) and Louise Wallace (4th, St Martin’s) are our latest successes at Bronze Level.
Anna took part in the school play for her Volunteering section, Played Real Tennis for her Physical and Passed Grade 4 theory in Piano during the completion of her Skills section of Music.
Louise helped her elderly neighbour for her three months Volunteering; took up running to complete her Physical and, for her Skills section, developed an interest in Photography.
Both Louise and Anna completed their 2-day/1-night expedition in the Elham Valley.
Both Anna and Louise have gone on to take the Silver challenge.
Our very own “Mary Poppins” – Malandra Rogers (2009-2016) – returned to Dover College to give a presentation to some of our senior pupils on the life of a Norland Nanny and Malandra’s own experiences at Norland College.
After her studies here in the Sixth Form, Malandra joined the Prep School as a young apprentice to give her a good grounding of practical experience in Early Years teaching before her successful application to Norland College.
Norland is the world famous college for the exceptional quality of its early year’s higher education and training. Norland graduates are always in high demand around the globe for their exceptional skills. Norland College has earned – for the second year running – the TEF Gold Award. The Teaching Excellence and Student Outcomes Framework (TEF) measures the quality of teaching in the UK. Gold is the highest standard.
Malandra’s visit, on Friday 24th January, was a great success. Malandra gave a presentation to senior pupils interested in a career in childcare and early years teaching. One pupil was so enthusiastic that she declared her intention, there and then, to visit Norland on the next college Open Day in May!
As well as her presentation, Malandra expressed a wish to revisit the Prep School and she spent a good part of the afternoon catching up with staff and the young pupils whom she had cared for during her time of apprenticeship prior to joining Norland. Mr Fairclough, Deputy Head of Prep School, said, ‘It was wonderful to welcome Malandra back to the Prep School. It is the place where her journey began when she volunteered whilst still a sixth former. Her natural bond with the children shines through and we are all delighted to see her begin to fulfil her potential by gaining her place on the prestigious Norland programme.’
Staff and pupils enjoyed Malandra’s return to Dover College and we are very pleased that she is doing so well in her second year of studies at Norland.
On Friday 31st January, the Lower Sixth journeyed to Portsmouth for a quick taste of student life. After a welcome mini-lecture giving an overview of Portsmouth’s university, the pupils went in groups on a tour of the campus including the Enterprise and Business Zone, Student Union and Sports Centre.
The groups were escorted by students currently studying at Portsmouth so there were plenty of opportunities for informal questions by our pupils.
Student Ambassadors explaining the workings of the Student Union building.
The Ambassadors and our International pupils outside the Business School
The tour included an opportunity to see student accommodation – including the bedrooms and communal kitchens. The Accommodation Manager gave a short introduction of the facilities and explained the security and safeguarding arrangements at the University of Portsmouth for first Year students – who all live in campus accommodation.
The visit ended with another opportunity to quiz the Student Ambassadors and to allow our Liaison Officer from Portsmouth University, Lydia Mansell, to answer any other questions. Lydia makes several visits to Dover College each year to give presentations on various aspects of the process of applying to university.
Mr Cox adds: “It was a very long journey but all of our pupils were tolerant and patient and as good-natured as they always are. They asked some great questions and I hope that this journey will inspire them to go on their own visits to Open Days at other universities before choosing their final ones to apply to as British universities are all so different from each other.”
There are many ways to find out about Open Days at universities and, just as we do at Dover College, if an Open Day does not suit, arrangements can always be made to visit on a non-Open day. Lower Sixth can find out more at: www.ucas.com/open-days or www.opendays.com. Pupils are always encouraged to do their own research for their future and should start with the “Careers” folder on the intranet.
Mr Cox is also very grateful to Miss Chen and Mrs Plant for accompanying him on this visit.
Mr Pattinson’s Fifth Form Tutor Group delivered a wonderful Chapel Service this week.
Are We Popular? Was Jesus popular?
This morning we are going to think about popularity.
What makes someone popular? Just think for a few moments and see if you come up with the same reasons that we did
People who are popular at school are:
We might be able to identify from our answers that popularity sometimes depends on status and achievements, sometimes on personality and sometimes on a mixture of both. However, most of us would probably agree that we like to be popular.
Popularity can change from day to day. A brilliant football player can quickly become forgotten when new talent becomes more prominent. Likewise, a misunderstanding between friends could mean that, for a while, people turn against us.
There is a well-known story in the Bible called the parable of the lost son that reminds us of this. It was one of the parables that was heard last term in Chapel. When wealth dwindles away and there is no money left for partying, our popularity can quickly disappear.
Jesus was popular for a long time and when he entered Jerusalem on Palm Sunday crowds lined the streets to welcome him, waving palm branches and throwing their coats down before him.
Here are some comments about Jesus
So, it seems that Jesus was pretty popular! However, a few days later, people seemed to have changed their minds. People started saying things like:-
Jesus did not strive to be popular. In fact, he was not interested in becoming popular. He tried to do what was right: to care for others and love people, even those who were unpopular and marginalized.
Jesus said that he wanted to please his father in heaven. Sometimes, Jesus walked away from the crowds who had flocked to hear him to spend time alone with his father, God. For many, Jesus became popular through his humility, servanthood and care of the poor and weak, and the wisdom of his words. At the same time, these actions earned him many enemies.
Someone who had views about the meaning of popularity was the Earl of Mansfield, a British barrister, politician and judge who was noted for his reform of English law. He became the most powerful British law expert of the eighteenth century and said this: ‘True popularity is not the popularity which is followed after, but the popularity which follows after.’
Jesus would seem to be an example of someone with true popularity: he did not strive to be popular, but it would be true to say that popularity followed after him. Two thousand years after his death, Jesus has millions of followers all over the world. In some countries, Christians are persecuted for their belief in him. Some are put in prison; some are taken from their families and even killed. However, it seems that even the threat of persecution does not keep people from responding to Jesus’ message.
Is this is true popularity?
Many people look on popularity as a goal worth striving for.
Many others are struggling with fading popularity.
Thank you for the example of Jesus, whose aim was to please only you.
As we try to live his way and follow him, give us a solid sense of our worth in your eyes.
Thank you that you know us and love us.
Please be with anyone in the world today who is suffering for a religious belief.
Please be close to them and keep them safe. Amen.
Save the Date for the Dover College Barn Dance!
Join us on Saturday 7th March at 6.30pm in the Refectory dancing and dinner with music from Contraband.
Tickets are on sale from Priory Lodge and the Prep School Office.
Your used crisp packets will be turned into life-saving funds for the Air Ambulance Kent Surrey Sussex. Please do bring them in to Priory Lodge!